SEOUL, Jan. 4 (Korea Bizwire) — “Work-life balance”, “feel-good value”, “more mobile” and “relationship ennui”.
These four phrases espouse the lifestyle preferences of South Korea’s millennial generation, according to a big data analysis of 12 billion posts on social networking services conducted by advertising agency HS Ad.
Referring to young adults born between the early 1980s and the 2000s, millennials are struggling with a lack of economic opportunity in an economy still shaking off the aftereffects of the 2008 financial crisis.
HS Ad’s analysis found that “work-life balance” first began to appear on social media in 2016, but only gained major popularity starting in the second half of 2017.
Traditionally, words that featured prominently in relation to “company (job) life” were “work”, “stress”, “ability” and “colleague”, but they have been replaced recently by “communication”, “weekend”, “vacation” and “leave work”. The shift in focus from work to the individual’s life outside of work is evidence of the importance of work-life balance to South Korean young adults.
Rather than “getting your money’s worth” or “getting more bang for your buck”, starting the latter half of 2017 millennial social media users stressed “feel-good value”, a newly coined phrase meaning the amount of emotional satisfaction generated in proportion to a product or service’s price (for example, a restaurant with good “feel-good value” would provide a positive and satisfying experience while being easy on the wallet).
“Feel-good value” is viewed as a major consumer trend to pay attention to going forward. HS Ad stated that businesses should also emphasize product and service safety as anxiety over public safety remains high due to a number of highly publicized accidents and disasters.
The tech-savvy millennial crowd is increasingly choosing to utilize “more mobile” for communication via Instagram, KakaoTalk, and other social networking services with massive user bases.
Compared to 2015, mentions of Instagram more than tripled, and the use of hashtags and photo editors for profile pictures have become commonplace.
Ironically, in an era of hyperconnectivity, “relationship ennui” is becoming more evident, as young adults are weary of the “hurt”, “stress”, “pain”, “pressure” and “dispute” that stems from relationships. Mentions of “fun alone” and “ending relationships” are on the rise since 2014, while “traditional ties” and “forming relationships” were mentioned neither more nor less since 2009.
Furthermore, while the number of related words suggesting “positive feelings” regarding relationships stayed unchanged, the opposite rose from 29.1 percent in 2009 to 32.0 percent in 2017.
Lina Jang (firstname.lastname@example.org)